Spiritual speed traps

neuschwanstein-castle-467116_1280In, lo, these many years of driving, I had never had even one point against my license, despite what my husband refers to a my “lead foot”. There is in our small town, however, a place drivers affectionate refer to as a “speed trap”—you know, the limit is 30mph, but in a few yards it goes up to 45, and in between the road gently slopes downward…

bodyworn-794099_1920The officer was nice. Nonetheless, I was a several dollars poorer and a few “points” wiser. 

The idea is that I was responsible for what I didn’t know, but should have known.  I didn’t know I was going ____mph over the speed limit.  I didn’t know there was an officer just biding his time.  Both of these bits of information would have been helpful in preventing my mishap, but no matter.  I still had to “pay the man.”

Which makes King Josiah’s response so much the better in my mind.

After a long and sordid line of (mostly) wicked rulers over God’s people, Josiah had a interesting idea—let’s follow our God.  In fixing up the temple, one of the workers found the Book, the Law where their God explains the conditions of the covenant with the people. 

Now, the king was already on the right track in terms of his heart-attitude, and being raised in a very ungodly and confusing family/social environment, he was doing what he could with what he had.  But when presented with this additional info, his reaction was, well, possibly a bit better than mine when I was pulled over…

“When the king heard what was written in the Book of the Law, he tore his clothes in despair.”

One of our family catch-phrases is “what am I supposed to do with this information.”  It’s really a good test to see if there is something the other person is expecting from me, or if he/she is simply, you know, just talking.  This seems to be exactly what Josiah did, and he discovered, in no uncertain terms, that God wasn’t just talking.

Someone once said that the Holy Spirit speaks to those whose hearts are positioned to act upon His instructions.  So when Josiah heard God speak, he took one of the offensive idols and…

“…he burned it. Then he ground the ashes of the pole to dust…”

Pretty definitive statement, that.  And it wasn’t the only culture shift that was made as Josiah “turned to the LORD with all his heart and soul and strength”.  Love it.  The kingdom of Judah was responsible for what they had neglected to know (even though it had been available), but God blessed them for the changes, (formidable ones, difficult ones), that were accomplished.

It would behoove us to follow his example.

2 Kings 22:11; 2 Kings 23:6   Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

In other words…

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  “ The LORD our God has secrets known to no one. We are not accountable for them, but we and our children are accountable forever for all that he has revealed to us…”

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

 

Wipe your paws, please

picmonkey dogThe Mighty Wonder Buck has a morning routine.  Actually, it’s based on my routine, which has to do with being very much a morning person.  Generally, I’m up at around daybreak or shortly thereafter, and that’s when I’m OFF work.  During the work week, it’s dark, and sometimes the birds aren’t even singing yet, unless it’s an owl, which is pretty cool in itself.

I’ll head outside for pot of tea on the patio, while Buckley noses around and sniffs and, well, does other things dogs need to do first thing in the morning. 

Except when it’s raining.  Then he’s on his own for a quick in-and-outer to do his business, which can be fairly substantial for a 60-pound pup. Because of his long hair and his feathered feet, he tends to track in LOTS of mud.   The mud doesn’t seem to bother him much; it’s just not within his canine Continue reading “Wipe your paws, please”

Don’t bother washing the hat

garden last

This spring I put in a new garden.  I’ve already blogged somewhere about it, so I’ll spare the details, but to say it’s back-breaking work (fine, I’ll admit it—especially for this aging back) is without question.  I’ve done it, however, with the hopeful expectation of an improved harvest. 

If I’ve learned one thing living in America’s Heartland, it’s that farmers are possibly some of THE hardest working individuals on kevinthe planet.  Their hands are not soft, and the ball caps on their heads are not nice and clean.  During harvest, they work dawn to dusk (sometimes beyond that), and it takes not only Continue reading “Don’t bother washing the hat”

The “Like” button

wood 2Bob and I have an ongoing debate about the “like” button.  He will peruse a post but not necessarily fully read it, hitting the “like” button “to encourage” the writer, and then of course, he will leave a comment only if he has something more substantial to say.  I’m not saying I’m always above doing that, but I’m more along the lines of “liking” something only if I “read” it.  Perhaps I am being a bit legalistic here?

Akin to that discussion is the “follow” button.  Hitting the follow button is likewise effortless, but authentically following is something else, because to really get to know someone takes time.  I want to “read” what’s on their hearts: how they process and interpret their experiences, and how they position themselves for the future.  I want to understand our disagreements, and guess what!  I might even change my mind on some things, or vice versa—how cool is that?!?

Unfortunately, the various WordPress conveniences seem to Continue reading “The “Like” button”

What were you thinking…?!?

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If Jonah was a prophet, then he must have been a very discouraged and disillusioned one.  You know how it goes.  Serve, serve, pray, pray, but nothing seems to change, except maybe to get worse. You’re misunderstood, misrepresented, laughed at (at best), ignored, shunned, or shut away.  Serving the Lord God Almighty was not a particularly easy, stress-free job.  It had few Continue reading “What were you thinking…?!?”

Paradogs

 

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Buckley and his human

I have a smart dog.  Sometimes too smart for his own good.  That is, he thinks he knows what he wants even when he knows it is the opposite of what I want even though he doesn’t understand why I want it, so he decides to go after his want, after which he may realize that wanting it was, well, not worth the want.  

Nevertheless, he’s still a pretty smart dog.  Right now he is not-so-contentedly lying at my feet despite the fact that he would rather be chasing the frisbee outside.  I, however, would Continue reading “Paradogs”

What about my rights? (and other whinings)

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Oct 23, 2015 – I give to God my “right” to see the outcome of my life’s effectiveness, the outcome of my parenting, my job performance, my marriage, my church involvement. 

This personal declaration may seem a little bizarre, especially since our business culture thinks in term of goals, outcomes, evaluations, etc.  I’m a practical person, maybe tending to the pragmatic at times.  Don’t misunderstand, strategy is not a bad thing, since it helps keep the wheels of our economy greased, I suppose.  Time/cost analysis, how to get from Point A to Point B in the most efficient way, and all that.

It’s just that God’s point B is generally not the same as ours. 

Three hundred men holding pots and firebrands was not Continue reading “What about my rights? (and other whinings)”

In other words…

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“Your ancestors refused to listen to this message. They stubbornly turned away and put their fingers in their ears to keep from hearing…. They turned their pleasant land into a desert.”

Zech 7: 11, 14  Tyndale House Publishers Inc (2008-06-01). The One Year Bible NLT (One Year Bible: Nlt Book 2) (Kindle Locations 42639-42640). Tyndale House Publishers. Kindle Edition.

Pickup truck optional


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A few years back one of our trees lost yet another branch.  That’s one thing about Midwest storms—even if the winds don’t rotate, they can still be mighty ferocious.  And somehow we had gotten this far into homeownership without a chain saw.  (We don’t have a pickup truck yet either, but we do have a Chevy Silverado Sub that comes in handy, so maybe that sort of counts.)  Bob basically looked out the window with an inward groan, since all he had was an axe, and this limb was definitely more than a simple axe job.

Out my faithful husband goes with what he had in his hand to begin the arduous clean up task.  Before long, here Continue reading “Pickup truck optional”